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SAFF Suzuki Cup 2018: Bangladesh 1-0 Pakistan

After a hard fought win in Dhaka, Host nation Bangladesh beat Pakistan 1-0 in Group A to come closer to semifinals of SAFF Suzuki Cup 2018. The only goal of the match came in the 85th minute when Topu Barman scored a close range header.

Both teams came into this game with three points from match day one. Bangladesh won against Bhutan by 2-0 and Pakistan’s dramatic 2-1 win over Nepal in Group A opener.

The first attack of the game came in the 8th minute when Muhammad Ali’s header was cleared away over the bar by Bangladesh goalkeeper Sahidhul Alam.

Pakistan created few chances in the first 20 minutes from set pieces. But, the host nation’s defense stayed firm and strong.

Unlike the first game played today between Nepal and Bhutan, there were morethan twenty-five thousand fans present at the fortress.

Bangladesh came close scoring in the 29th minute. Saad Uddin’s right footed shot from long range on the left went wide. Both teams played an aggressive first half giving away too many cheap free kicks. In the 40th minute, Bangladesh midfielder Masuk Miah Zoni was booked for a dangerous play.

Bangladesh tried to score from long range shots in the final third as they could not penetrate through the Pakistan’s well discipline defense. The first half ended 0-0.

In the second half, Bangladesh threatened Pakistan defense by long throws. But, the Pakistani defense was much aware of the threat as they cleared it all well.

Pakistan forward Muhammad Ali had the best chance of the game in the 54th minute when threw Bangladesh defender in a shoulder to shoulder challenge and hit the target well. Unfortunately, his well struck strike was saved by Bangladesh goalkeeper.

Both team played an average game in the second half. No team created enough to break oppositions defense. Defender Topu Barman who scored in the first match against Bhutan had a great chance in the 82nd minute when a loose ball fell into his feet inside the box. But, his right foot effort went wide.

The only goal of the game came in the 85th minute when a Bangladesh player flicked a long throwing in to the far corner and Topu Barman who was in the right place at the right time made no mistake heading it into the bottom corner. He was also booked when he removes the jersey during the celebration. Bangladesh held on to the lead until the final whistle.

Bangladesh will play Nepal in last group stage game.

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